Financial planning, G.O.P style

Looks like the McCains are practicing Republican economics — borrow and spend — in their personal life as well:

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and his wife reported more than $100,000 of credit card liabilities, according to financial disclosure documents released Friday.

The presidential candidate and his wife Cindy reported piling up debt on a charge card between $10,000 and $15,000. His wife’s solo charge card has between $100,000 and $250,000 in debt to American Express.

McCain’s wife also has a second American Express charge card listed on the senator’s financial disclosure that was carrying $100,000 to $250,000 in debt.

Another charge card with American Express, this one for a “dependent child,” is carrying debt in the range of $15,000 and $50,000.

Of course, carrying a large debt just proves that the McCains are regular folks — not like those elitist Obamas, who apparently live within their means.

Seriously, why would the McCains have so much credit card debt? Is there some reason they wouldn’t want to pay off the credit cards promptly, or is it conceivable that they actually have a liquidity problem despite Cindy’s vast wealth, or are they just so used to not having to worry about money that they (or their accountants) simply don’t pay that much attention to their personal finances? I assume they’re paying interest on all that debt, and are basically throwing money away, right? This doesn’t bode well for smart management of the Federal budget.

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6 responses to “Financial planning, G.O.P style

  1. What’s all that stuff in the middle — not their expenses!

  2. Oops — that was formatting code that appeared when I cut-and-pasted those paragraphs from the article. I’ve cleaned it up.

  3. American Express used to be a CHARGE card, which meant you paid it all off at the end of the month, no interest. I don’t know if that’s still true, but if it is, they sure are spending a lot of money. Joe Sixpack perhaps, but a lot of sixpacks.

  4. Or maybe they somehow have a 0% interest rate (who knows what kind of AMEX cards the superwealthy are able to get!), in which case carrying a lot of debt would be a financially sensible thing to do.

    Okay, maybe they’re just big spenders, rather than being financially irresponsible. It would be interesting to know the terms of the debt. The article says they are “piling up debt” and “carrying debt.” If those are just the balance on a single month’s statements, then the article is inaccurate (and that NEVER happens).

  5. BoorishPeasant

    “Seriously, why would the McCains have so much credit card debt?”

    Because it’s not “so much” compared to how much money they have. And you “assume” they are paying interest on credit card debt because, well, because you feel that they must. There is no evidence that they are paying the high rates, and it’s doubtful that they would do so given their wealth

    McCain is wisely putting expenses on credit cards to maximize credit rewards. Can we expect to see similar hard-hitting reporting on credit card usage of multi-millionaire Dems like Nancy Pelosi and Jay Rockefeller?

  6. BoorishPeasant is right: I “assumed” that the McCains had to pay interest on their debts, just because that’s what regular, non-rich people have to do. How silly of me — apparently Cindy is able to carry longterm debt on their Amex card at zero interest. Now how do I get myself one of these $250,000-plus loans at zero interest?

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